Prior to relocating to UNC in May 2010, he held the John Sealy Distinguished University Chair in Infection and Immunity at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston, where he was the founding director of the Galveston National Laboratory and the Institute for Human Infections and Immunity (2004-2010).
He is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases, and was previously chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology (1997-2000) and dean of the School of Medicine (1999-2004) at UTMB.
Dr. Lemon is internationally recognized for his research into the molecular virology and pathogenesis of viral hepatitis in humans. He has authored or co-authored over 300 original research publications, reviews, or textbook chapters. Research in his laboratory has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for over 24 years, and focuses on the molecular pathogenesis of hepatitis A and C viruses, both of which infect the human liver but with dramatically different outcomes.
Ongoing studies include those directed at learning how these viruses stimulate and/or evade innate intrahepatic immune responses, and why chronic hepatitis C infections in particular are associated with the development of liver cancer.
Other interests include molecular mechanisms of viral replication and the development of antiviral therapies. Dr. Lemon is the 2009 recipient of the John Enders Award in Medical Virology from the Infectious Disease Society of America. He served previously as chair of the Anti-Infective Drugs Advisory Committee and the Vaccines and Related Biologics Advisory Committee of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Dr. Lemon is past chair of the Steering Committee on Hepatitis and Poliomyelitis of the World Health Organization Programme on Vaccine Development, and former chair of the Forum on Microbial Threats of the Institute of Medicine. He co-chaired the National Research Council study on Globalization, Biosecurity and the Future of the Life Sciences and presently serves as a member of the U.S. Delegation of the U.S.-Japan Cooperative Medical Sciences Program and the National Science Advisory Board on Biosecurity.